Thursday, May 24, 2018

A Trip to Torino Turns Into an AMAZING Plan B at the Duomo in Milan

Wednesday, 23 May, 2018

Our plan for the day was simple enough, coffee at the bar next to the Venegono Inferiore train station, catch the 7:35 a.m. train to Milan, board the Green Metro line to Milan's Centrale train station and then board another train heading West to Torino, a.k.a., Turin.

A day trip to the main city in the Piedmont region just sounded good to us both.

Everything was going well until we got to the Metro station. We submerged into the Metro tunnel to find both a jam packed Green line Metro at the platform and a jam packed platform with commuters now having to wait for the next Metro a few minutes later. This was business as usual at rush hour but what happened next wasn't.

The doors of the Metrclosed and then opened again and again and again. After abouthe tenth attempt, the lights on the Metro went dark and it was announced thaeveryone needed to geoff as the Metro had broken down.

We all knew thathat meantrouble since one just can'push the Metro off to the side.

We decided quickly that we needed a Plan B as we did not want to deal with finding the correct Tram line to Milan Centrale. We have not been able to find any kind of a tram map in all of our Milan travels so you just have to find a tram stop and see where the trams on this particular stops head.

Madcap I know, but that is life in the North sometimes.

Our Plan B today was a visit to Milan's Duomo.

All of Milan's Duomo, i.e., outside, inside, underneath and atop.

It would turn out to be
a GREAT Plan B

But first we needed another cappuccino and a brioche at one of our favorite and diet dangerous spots in Milan, the Pasticceria Marchesi.

 See whaI mean about . . . 

 . . . dangerous!

A new, random church for us

It was Greek Orthodox style inside. That was different.

 San Carlos Borromeo


Laurie was in need of a restroom break, so we ducked into the fabulous Peck eatery to use their free facility.

I posed as a shopper to give her cover.  



And DOUBLE Yikes!

The fruit topped one in the middle on the left looks really healthy to me.

Just saying.

Peck has teas, lots of teas

On to Plan B . . .

Protecting the piazza in front of . . .

. . . Milan's Duomo

St. Andrew with his X shaped cross

 Show off

Getting in line to enter the Duomo after buying our 16 Euros per person ducats afforded us some different, close up views of the Duomo.

It is tall

It is ornate

 It is interesting

The Piazza Duomo

Laurie loves grapes

Especially after fermentation.

A veiled face on the right

 You two,

So much artwork!

The Duomo was constructed between 1386 and 1810 with final touches added as late as 1965.

The dukes of Milan wanted to impress their peers to the North in France and Germany and gain the respect of the Vatican to the South.

Mission Accomplished!  

Incredible main entry door

Stop flashing the crowd!


 We were finally inside
one of Christendom's greatest
Gothic Cathedrals

We had visited this wondrous church when there was no entry fee back in 2008 and again in 2009.

It was more amazing inside than we both remembered.

 How did they do this?

My sign is Cancer

Laurie's is Taurus

Of course there are astrological signs in a Catholic Cathedral.

Laurie overwhelmed by
a Duomo pillar . . .

. . . An extremely BIG pillar

Different Holy Water Font

What am I taking a picture of  ask?

The chronological list of all of the 144
Archbishops/Cardinals of the Duomo

 #140 would become Pope Paul VI

A Confessional

"In this Sign Conquer"

 Mary over the Duomo's Façade

Jesus is BIG in the Duomo

So is Mary

So is the Medici family

Ornate Cross

San Bartolomeo

This 16th-century statue of this 1st-century Apostle and martyr who was skinned alive by those wacky, fun loving Romans may be my favorite piece of art in all of Europe.

It was carved by one of Leonardo di Vinci's students. What makes it appealing to me is that it gave the young artist a chance to show off the skills he had learned about human anatomy after studying cadavers which the Catholic Church prohibited in those times.

Thus he displayed the inner anatomically correct San Bartolomeo draped with his robe-like skin.

What a rascal. 

San Bartolomeo was not
fearful of Leg Day it appears

 Collapsed foot skin


 A smaller but no less intricate pillar

 I was getting a little tired too

Jesus and a couple of angels


After touring the interior of the Duomo, we went under it to . . .

. . . the remains of a church
that pre-dates the Duomo
at this site

In Roman times the streets here were about ten feet lower than they are today.

Sforza crested pottery was
on display with the ruins

One last look before heading
out the doors . . .

. . . and oh what doors INDEED!

A Blessing

What is going on in the lower panel?

So much talent . . .

The Tower of Babel?

Our final Duomo destination was its roof via elevator for the most part.

We had never been up there before and we were in for a great surprise.


Two great views,
Laurie and Milan


What do you think you
Northern Kings?

Who does not love
a beautiful buttress?

LOTS of beautiful buttresses

 Laurie insisted

How could I say no?

 The Vatican just had to be impressed!

 Old spires in the foreground,
a new one in the distance

 Even at rooftop levels, the detailed
artwork continued

Laurie with spires and
the Galleria behind her

 Framing Milan

 Standing on the Duomo's roof


 Laurie liked this face

 I liked these boxers

These two also

What are modern day boxers doing on top of the Duomo you ask?

Simple really, you see an Italian boxer by the name of Primo Carnera reigned as the World Heavyweight Champion after beating Jack Sharkey at Madison Square Garden in June of 1933.

Il Duce, Benito Mussolini, knew a good PR situation when he saw it and made Carnera into a sort of poster boy for Fascist propaganda.

This would include adding these boxing images to the Duomo's rooftop.

By the way, these boxing statues were listed as the #7 thing to see in my book 111 Places in Milan That You Must Not Miss.

A bit more traditional

The view of the Piazza Duomo
before we started our descent

Still loving the buttresses

Cherubs always seem to
do the heavy lifting

One last artsy foto of an
extremely artsy building

The Sun was out, Laurie wanted to shop while I wanted to browse the Galleria's two book shops.

Meet you by the Leonardo di Vinci
statue on the Piazza La Scala

Let's roam a bit before eating lunch.

Interesting building

Sunny window grate

 Bottle glass windows

All of these details made for quite he edifice!

 Fortunately, this was a
Sumo Wrestling free zone

 Milan's Centrale Station

We made it not for a train to Torino as planned but only for Laurie to see and have lunch in one of their many bistros.

Only one more train for us today and that was home to the Villa Skorpion via the Cadorna to Venegono Inferiore train stations.

A fat cat on a blissful
Italian train ride home

It was such a BEAUTIFUL day, why were we not practicing American football?


David said...

So here's a Milan tram map, although it's so complex I'm not sure how much it will help:

George said...

Son of a gun!

Leave it to you to do the impossible!